In-app messaging: 15 examples to engage users

Sara Ana Cemazar
January 24, 2023
min read

In today's fast-paced digital landscape, engaging with users is more important than ever. As a business, having a direct line of communication with your customers can increase customer satisfaction and loyalty. According to a study, 85% of businesses will provide direct communication channels like live chat to their customers by 2022. 

That's where in-app messaging comes in, offering a convenient and effective way to communicate with users at their fingertips. 

In this blog, we'll explore some strategies and in-app messaging examples of how they can create meaningful connections with users and drive engagement.

So sit back, grab a cup of coffee, and join us on this exciting journey of discovery!

What is in-app messaging, and how it helps you boost user retention?

In-app messaging refers to the practice of sending messages directly to users within a mobile or web application. These messages can serve various purposes, such as providing information, promoting a feature or service, or asking for feedback.

In-app messaging helps boost user retention by allowing businesses to communicate with their users promptly and personally.

Companies can use in-app chat to provide users with relevant information and support when needed and build trust and loyalty by demonstrating a commitment to their users' needs. 

In-app messaging can also help businesses increase user engagement by promoting new features or services or encouraging users to complete specific actions within the app. Overall, in-app messaging helps businesses foster a more connected and engaged user base, which leads to increased user retention and growth.

15 in-app messaging examples to drive user retention and engagement

From guiding new users through the onboarding process to introducing new features and collecting valuable feedback, In-app messaging demonstrates the endless possibilities of this method to recalibrate direct communication. 

We have compiled a list of some outstanding real-life in-app messaging examples of how leading brands use in-app messaging to drive user retention and engagement.

1. Guided onboarding

Guided onboarding is a process of introducing new users to an app through interactive tutorials or prompts. The goal is to aid users in understanding the features better and making the most out of the apps. 

Generally, it takes the form of in-app messages, pop-ups, tooltips, etc., and helps increase user engagement and reduce frustration.

  • Airbnb
in app messaging example

Airbnb's guided onboarding starts with an introduction and then shows users through the process of creating an account, adding their payment information, and finding and booking a property. Airbnb's onboarding process is planned to be personalized and engaging. Also, it facilitates understanding how to use the instant messaging platform to find and book their ideal travel experience.

  • Dropbox
in app messaging example

Dropbox's guided onboarding process introduces users to the platform and its key features and then introduces the process of uploading, sharing, and organizing their files. Dropbox's onboarding process is straightforward and helps users understand how to use the platform to store and access their files from anywhere.

  • Headspace
in app messaging example

Headspace's guided onboarding process starts with introducing the platform’s key features. Afterward, it takes the users through setting up their meditation practice and choosing their first meditation session. The onboarding process is designed to be calming and inspiring and helps users understand how to use the platform to start and maintain their mindfulness practice.

2. Welcome messages

A welcome message is a type of in-app message displayed to users when they first open an app or create an account. Consequently, these messages make new users feel welcomed and valued and encourage them to use the app immediately

It also drives engagement and retention by creating a positive first experience that encourages continued use of the app.

  • Uber

Uber's welcome message is among the most useful in-app messaging examples. It is designed to be simple, explaining how to use the app to request a ride. The message includes a brief overview of the app's key features, such as tracking your ride in real-time and paying through the app. This welcome message sets the tone for a positive user experience and helps new users get started with the app quickly.

  • Linkedin
in app messaging example

The LinkedIn Premium's welcome email for its free trial is filled with information about the various features that come with Premium status. This powerful message showcases the upgrade's value and encourages new customers to make the most of their trial by exploring all the benefits.

By presenting all these advantages in one email, LinkedIn ensures that new users know their decision to try the Premium version was good.

  • Amazon

Amazon's welcome message explains how to start shopping and using the platform's various services. The message includes recommendations for products and services based on the user's interests and encourages them to explore the platform. It helps new users understand the breadth of offerings available on the platform and makes it easy for them to start using it immediately.

3. Introducing new features

Properly announcing new features and product updates can boost adoption rates. In-app messaging is key in helping users understand these changes and why they are important.

By clearly and concisely explaining the purpose and benefits of newupdates, users are more likely to adopt and utilize the product.
  • Duolingo
in app messaging example

Duolingo’s application is an excellent in-app messaging example. It offers early access to new features, such as virtual reality courses, which create excitement and encourage users to explore and provide feedback.

  • Google Docs
in app messaging example

Google Docs is among the leading in-app messaging examples that effectively announces new features and updates. When Google Docs introduces a new feature, such as the ability to collaborate on documents in real-time, they use in-app messaging to explain the purpose and benefits of the update clearly.

This makes it easier for users to understand and adopt the new functionality, leading to increased engagement and satisfaction with the product. 

  • Netflix
in app messaging example

Netflix uses in-app messaging to alert users to new releases and features, such as their integration with external devices, encouraging users to continue using the app to enjoy the latest content.

4. Driving new feature adoption

In-app messaging examples also include applications where it can be used to drive new feature adoption in several ways, such as:

  • Explain the purpose of the new feature or update is, and why it is important to the user.
  • Provide personalized tutorials and walkthroughs of new features.
  • Offer early access to new features, creating excitement and encouraging users to explore and provide feedback.
  • Highlight the benefits of new features and updates, making it more attractive for users to adopt the new functionality.

Let's elaborate on this in-app messaging example with some more use cases. 

  • Trello

Trello’s in-app messaging promotes new features and updates. They do this through announcements, personalized tutorials, early access, and promoting feature benefits. The company's focus on using in-app messaging to drive new feature adoption is a key factor in its success and user satisfaction.

  • Intercom
in app messaging example

The platform’s use of in-app messaging involves highlighting new features, providing walkthroughs, and offering personalized suggestions based on each user's behavior and usage. This helps users quickly understand and adopt new functionality and encourages them to explore the platform's full range of features.

5. Collecting user feedback

Collecting user feedback is vital for brands to gather information about their users, understand their needs and preferences, and improve their products. In-app messaging is a useful tool for collecting user feedback, providing a direct and convenient way for users to provide their thoughts and opinions. For example: 

  • Surveys: Brands leverage in-app messaging to send surveys to their users, asking for their thoughts on specific features, the overall product experience, or any other relevant topics.
  • Feedback forms: In-app messaging is ideal for presenting feedback forms to users, making it easy for them to provide suggestions, report bugs, or offer ideas for improvement.
  • User test groups: Brands can utilize in-app messaging to invite select users to participate in user test groups, where they can provide feedback on new features or updates before they are released to the public.

Here are a few in-app messaging examples that involve collecting user feedback:

  • Hubspot
in app messaging example

Hubspot uses in-app messaging to gather feedback on specific features and the overall user experience. It facilitates gathering feedback on their app updates, allowing them to make improvements that meet the needs of their users.

  • Airtable

Airtable employs in-app messaging to gather feedback on specific features and the overall user experience. They also use it to gather feedback on their app updates, allowing them to make improvements that meet the needs of their users.

  • Dropbox

Once again, Dropbox utilizes in-app messaging to ask users for feedback on new features and updates. This helps them understand what users like and what they would like to see improved and to make informed decisions about the product's future approach.

3 in-app messaging best practices you must try

In-app messaging is a powerful tool for engaging users, but it's important to use it effectively. In this section, we will explore some of the best practices for in-app messaging that can help you get the most out of your efforts. 

By following these in-app messaging best practices, you can ensure that your in-app messaging campaigns are effective, relevant, and well-received by your users.

1. Use the user engagement data to adapt your messaging and product continuously

Using user engagement data is a crucial in-app messaging best practice. It helps make informed decisions about your in-app messaging strategy and allows you to track the effectiveness of your messages and make adjustments accordingly.

By continuously analyzing and adjusting your messaging based on user engagement data, you can improve the relevance and impact of your in-app messages, ultimately leading to increased user retention and satisfaction. 

Tracking user engagement data is a crucial component of an effective in-app messaging strategy, as it allows you to iterate and optimize your approach to drive better results constantly.

2. Measure, measure, measure: keep track of Key user engagement metrics

Tracking the most important app engagement metrics will give you a clear understanding of how your in-app messaging is performing and impacting user engagement and retention. It will help you make data-driven decisions about how to optimize and improve your in-app messaging.

  1. Open rate: The percentage of users who opened your in-app message.
  2. Click-through rate: The percentage of users who clicked on links or calls to action within your in-app message.
  3. Conversion rate: The percentage of users who completed the desired action after clicking on a call-to-action within your in-app message.
  4. User feedback: Collect direct user feedback through in-app surveys or rating prompts to gain further insight into how users feel about your in-app messaging.
  5. Opt-in rate: The percentage of users who have agreed to receive in-app messages.
  6. Bounce rate: The percentage of users who have closed or dismissed your in-app message without interacting with it.
  7. Repeat engagement rate: The percentage of users who have received multiple in-app messages and have engaged with them.

3. Test your words, tone, and timing

When using in-app messaging, always try to test different linguistic and systematic elements of your messages, such as the words you use, the tone, and the timing. This helps to ensure that your users receive your messages and effectively engage them.

By testing these elements, you can find out what works best for your users and continuously improve your messaging strategy. It will help increase the success rate of your in-app messaging and ultimately drive user engagement and retention.

Parting notes 

In a densely competitive market, you must get specific selling points across to the customers and familiarize them with your applications' features and unique benefits.  This will aid in the long-term strategies of the brand, building a loyal customer base who are kept in the loop with the latest developments and trajectories. We hope these 15 in-app messaging examples have guided you to understand how to leverage direct communication and engage effectively with your customers. 

How to start building an in-app messaging engine quickly? 

Building a white-label in-app messaging engine is a great place to start if you're looking to enhance user engagement and boost retention. With Rocket.Chat, an open-source platform, you can access all the critical tools you need to create a highly-tailored, real-time communication experience for your users. 

Whether you're looking to improve customer support, foster collaboration, or build a community, Rocket.Chat has got you covered. 

So why wait? Learn more about how you can build an in-app messaging engine with us and start reaping the benefits of enhanced user engagement.

Get started with Rocket.Chat’s secure collaboration platform

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Sara is an SEO Strategist at Rocket.Chat. She is passionate about topics around digital transformation, workplace experience, open source, and data privacy and security.
Sara Ana Cemazar
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